Time to recover from yesterdays' ride. Instead of doing nothing I prefer doing an easy ride . Although today saw no rain and the sun almost looked as if she was going to break through the light cloud cover, the wind made a real recovery ride difficult. It gushed along quite forcefully. Nevertheless my average heart rate was below 100bpm on this ride with a max of 119bpm. I stopped for a snack in L'Ecluse, one of those little villages hidden away between the rolling hills just south of the language border.
Ride Stats : 49K and 340/368 heightmeters (Polar/Garmin) in 2h10mins
This weather is simply unbelievable. I swear I can already smell autumn in the air. It was 13 degrees this morning and again it rained from time to time. I had already decided NOT to go to Houffalize this weekend. With yesterdays thunderstorms and my condition that isn't what it should be, I didn't feel motivated for a muddy 50K. So today I could go out for a longer road ride. I already noticed yesterday that the Vossem Pro Cyclo tour passed in front of my door so I decided to follow that. On the web I found that they offered a 90K distance which seemed do-able to me. I left around noon - after seeing Sven Nys take a well-deserved 9th place at the Mens Olympic Cross Country mountainbike event but sadly also seeing Roel Paulissen fail miserably with a 19th place. As was to be expected Julien Absalon clinched the gold in front of his countrymen Jean Christophe Péraud with a surprisingly good Nino Shurter beating his fellow Suisse Christophe Sauser for the Bronze medal. I had also seen Sabine Spitz take a wll-deserved victory in the Womens' race earlier, proceeding amazing Maja Wloszczowska and World Cup winner Irina Kalentieva.
Back to Belgium where my ride turned out to be a good one, notwithstanding the rain showers - light rain - and a fierce wind. I also managed to lose the arrowing a couple of times. I'm not sure how they count their kilometres in Vossem but when I arrived back home I had nearly 20K more than was to be expected. I felt tired but also satified with the achieved distance, even though the height profile wasn't that impressive. You can check the complete ride on the map I made with GPS Visualiser.
After going towards Linden and Sint Pieters Rode they spent a lot of time in the flat area south of Aarschot and Mechelen before returning over Meerbeek and Everberg towards Vossem. In the beginning of the ride were some more hills when they went towards Duisburg, Huldenberg and Sint Joris Weert.
I got another surprise upon arriving home : our Tia Hellebaut clinched the GOLD medal in the Womens' High Jump.. congratulations Tia !!
Ride Stats : 110K and 595/696 heightmeters (Polar/Garmin) in 4h42mins
It rained ever so slightly when I set out for a ride around 10am. I had hoped to watch the Olympic Mountainbike race for the Women but due to the heavy rainfall yesterday the race is postponed to 10am tomorrow. That means 4am our time.. Mm, thats early. The Mens' race is to follow around 9am our time. I felt like the weather today, drizzly. When I woke up I was already tired and I had to settle to a relaxed pace on the bike. I rode over to Filip Sport because I wanted to talk to him face to face about my forfait for his South Tirol week and the reasons for that forfait. For the Houffa marathon this sunday I managed to secure a slot on the 50K distance. A far cry from my original plan to ride the 125K. I would have preferred to ride the 75K instead but that distance was booked solid. So the 50K it will be. I will ride to Houffalize tomorrow evening to join some friends in a gite we rented. I will probably only stay one night but I look forward to meet up with them. It has been too long since we last met. The rain accompanied me until I got home, the road was wet enough to produce some spray but with a temperature of 18 degrees C (it IS august isn't it? I'm beginning to wonder) it didn't feel cold.
Oh, and CONGRATS to our girls who won the SILVER medal in the 4x100 metres Olympic final !!
Ride Stats : 70K and 690/726 heightmeters (Polar/Garmin) in 3h10mins
I wanted to ride my bike outside today, but nothing too tough, so I settled on the first part of my Secret Meerdael Loop. This is not too hilly but very twisty and with lots of singletrack. The forest floor was moist but not wet. Pity they are still foresting trees and the big machines have wreaked havoc on some of the smaller trails. Its a bit ironic when you see signs forbidding all manner of mechanical traffic and then some big machines makes its way into that trail, running over the sign in the process.
Oh well, I had a good ride. The temps were just beneath 20 degrees C, and even though I had to walk at some sections, due to trees having fallen over the trails, I enjoyed the trails and my bike to the fullest. Stopped at the owl to make another picture of it and also at the shelter overlooking Mollendaalbos.
I have inscribed for the 50k distance at the Houffalize marathon this weekend. Initially I wanted to do a longer distance but I want to take it easy with my lower back playing up. I'm sure the 50k will give me a good taste of the region without having to stress my body too much
Ride Stats : 34K and 340/420 heightmeters (Polar/Garmin) in 1h59mins
Due to lingering health problems I had been brooding for a while about some arrangements that were made for the beginning of September. I kept pondering over and over how I would solve the puzzle but in the end I decided to cancel the trip and focus on other goals that are more attainable and less perilous to my health. I will also have to change my Houffalize marathon plans but I will see later this week in what way. This morning I was very stiff in my lower back so I decided to ride on the rollers today. I had a very intense ride and was at the same time able to be gentle to my lower back while riding . I have high hopes to go to Theux at last at the end of the week. It is mid August and I still haven't done either my "longest downhill" track or the marvelous Red Adeps route at Theux. The weather is to blame, and of course I can't get away from work in the weeks and my weekends are pretty tied up as well.But this friday I think I should be able to make it to Theux . At the moment I am a bit sad because of the cancellation I had to do, and also because of my health problems that keep lingering without any hope of treatment. I can control the situation but that is all. And to be able to control the situation I need to stay at home, it is as simple as that. At the moment I feel like a werewolf that has to take pills to remain a wolf. If I stop taking the pills I change back to human form with all the troubles that brings. And those damn doctors aren't helping either.
On a more positive note, it seems our Rambo is recovering from his severe diabetes condition. We had been noticing he was having hypos so we figured his daily insulin shots were too highly dosed. Because the vet's replacement was a stupid oaf that didn't succeed in drawing blood from him, we had to wait until today - and the vet's return - to get his blood taken. His blood sugar levels were as low as 38 ! No wonder he was having hypo's all the time. I am so angry at that replacement vet! If I would have been there she would have gotten all my frustration and anger poured over her. Good thing my sister went. In short, we were giving way too much insulin to Rambo, unknowingly , which might as well have killed him during the two weeks before we could have his blood examined . Luckily my instinct already told me to lower the size of the shots when I first saw him showing signs of hypoglycemea. Jeezes, I am so angry ! But I have to control this anger and shape it into gratefulness and relief because Rambo is still alive and seems to be less dependent on insulin. Now we have to HALVE his daily doses . Seems his pancreas has resumed to making some insulin by itself. Amazing how nature works sometimes.